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FAO Appeals G20 Leaders to Invest in 'Sustainable Living' to Feed World’s Growing Population

Shivam Dwivedi
Shivam Dwivedi
G-20 Summit (Pic Credit: The Conversation)

On Thursday (July 22), Union Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav along with Minister of State for Environment Ashwini Choubey and other senior officials had participated virtually in 16th G20 Summit. This summit was held under Italian Presidency and revolve around its primary theme of "People, Planet and Prosperity."

The Head of the UN Food Relief Agency urged world’s wealthiest nations on Thursday to invest more in 'Sustainable Living', to feed the world’s growing population.

Director-General of the FAO, Qu Dongyu, in his appeal to G-20 Environment Ministers, spotlighted the obstacles of having to grow more and more food while lessening greenhouse gas emissions. 

“Today, humanity faces a triple planetary crisis of biodiversity loss, climate crisis and the impact of the pandemic”, he said. “To have healthy food, we need a healthy environment”.

Focus on Judicious use of Water: 

As we know, water is crucial for all flora-fauna to survive. Therefore, it is our duty to use water consciously in our daily lives. FAO chief also spoke of the need to solve the problem of water scarcity, which affects more than a billion people across the world, by improving efficiency and sustainable management. 

Almost a billion hectares of rain-fed pasture land & cropland are also badly affected by frequent droughts. Qu suggested that water-related problems could be effectively resolved through digital innovation, better oversight & investment. 

Furthermore, he also called for boosting up biodiversity-friendly approaches, including more investments in related actions and decreasing the pace of biodiversity loss. 

“Current levels of investment are highly insufficient”, said the FAO Director-General. 

Need of Investment of about $1.4 trillion per year: 

Director General of FAO emphasized on reversing deforestation as it will help mitigate climate change and also avert disease outbreaks passing from animals to humans. Furthermore, adding that the economic benefits of halting biodiversity loss and land degradation, could amount to $1.4 trillion per year.

Recent launch of UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, led by FAO and the UN Environment Programme (UNEP), provides a wonderful opportunity to mobilize our collective efforts.

FAO is urged for immediate action to reverse the alarming pace of biodiversity loss, suggested to boost up mitigation approaches and actions across the food and agricultural sectors globally.  

Focus on Food systems across the world: 

Food Systems Pre-Summit is ready to start for three days from 26-28 July, ahead of the major Summit itself, due to take place later this year. Interested individuals can register for next week's virtual event in the following link:

https://www.unfoodsystems.org/registration/

It's being organized as part of the Decade of Action to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. The main aim of the high-level meeting is to bring together all key stakeholders from the fields of science, business, policy, healthcare, academia and others to launch strong actions to achieve all 17 SDGs- each of which relies to some degree on healthier, more sustainable and equitable food systems.

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